Not legally required in school until age 5 - how does this work?

(14 Posts)
TheWordOfBagheera Wed 22-Jun-16 13:10:04

It's the term after they turn 5, yes? But what happens if they turn 5 in a school holiday e.g. easter holiday is April 20th-27th and their birthday is the 23rd?

Do they have to do the summer term or are they not required to start until the next school year?

Also, if you decide not to take up your accepted place until their 5th birthday, are the school required to hold the place until then or could they consider that forfeiting it and give it to another pupil?

Duckyneedsaclean Wed 22-Jun-16 13:14:07

If your birthday is in the holiday, you'd have to start straight after the holiday.

If you defer until the summer term of reception, the school has to hold your place. If you defer until the next school year (ie your child turns 5 in the summer term) the school does not hold a place & you would have to hope there was a space in year one.

PatriciaHolm Wed 22-Jun-16 13:14:19

A child reaches compulsory school age on the prescribed day following his fifth birthday (or on his fifth birthday if it falls on a prescribed day). The prescribed days are 31 December, 31 March and 31 August (this is stated in the Admissions code).

A school has to hold the place if you request to defer within the same school year (so you get a place for Sept, but want to defer until Easter, say).

They don't have to defer it past the normal year of admission; you don't currently have a right to defer to the next year. Parents can make case for the deferred admission of summer borns (or indeed any child) but admissions authorities don't have to grant it, though many are looking more favourably than they used to.

AndNowItsSeven Wed 22-Jun-16 13:15:47

No that's incorrect Duckt, the cut off is match 31st regardless of when the holidays are. If you have an April - August born child they can start school the following September .

Duckyneedsaclean Wed 22-Jun-16 13:19:34

Ah, because Easter's a movable feast, of course.

TheWordOfBagheera Wed 22-Jun-16 13:22:09

Thanks both, that's really helpful smile.

So an Easter holiday child would have to do the last term of the year, but the school would have to hold on to the place for them.

We're on the waiting list for first choice school and considering delaying starting at the second choice to see if a place becomes available into the year at the first choice. I wasn't sure when we would have to start at the second choice if that didn't happen though, or if second choice school would keep the place, but it's good to know that they would.

The council admissions phone number is permanently engaged so I can't ask them!

TheWordOfBagheera Wed 22-Jun-16 13:23:12

Oh I took too long to write that and didn't notice the other replies!

So it's actually September that they'd have to start, and the place is no longer guaranteed?

AndNowItsSeven Wed 22-Jun-16 13:25:04

Yes September and you apply a year later.

Duckyneedsaclean Wed 22-Jun-16 13:25:55

I think you could just defer to the summer term though? (May be wrong about that)

TheWordOfBagheera Wed 22-Jun-16 13:31:31

Brilliant, thank you.

Is there also the option of applying for reception again at that point (instead of year 1)?

NynaevesSister Wed 22-Jun-16 13:35:31

If your child has a birthday on the 23rd April then you are entitled to start them in the Summer Term (which is after the Easter Holidays) and the school MUST hold their place.

You can quote them Section 2, part 16 of the School Admissions Code 2014. Google it - a PDF of the code will be one of the first hits.

InternationalHouseofToast Wed 22-Jun-16 13:40:51

Word, not at the momnt, you have the right to ask but the school can refuse you an out of year reception place.

TheWordOfBagheera Fri 24-Jun-16 09:12:38

Good to know that's not an option that can be relied on, thanks Toast.

admission Fri 24-Jun-16 11:44:45

It is a sensible move to hold off starting your child at the allocated school in the hope that a place may come up at your preferred school but you do need to make sure that you carry that out correctly. You need to inform the school now that you are deferring entry till the summer term and they have to retain the place.
However if you do not start then, you loose the place. You cannot just start in year 1, as there will be no available place or expect a place in reception. In theory you can ask for an out of age year group but you should have done this already if this was being considered and an application now, which is to the LA, is unlikely to be successful.

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